Accountability in nursing practice is not a new concept. Although the term is found extensively in nursing literature and regulatory documents, there has been no agreed upon definition. A review of the literature did not produce any definition from a nursing perspective. The purpose of this qualitative study was to obtain how the cultural group of registered nurses defined accountability. Interviews were conducted with 7 individual medical/surgical nurses and by analyzing their language through the ethnoscience methodology, a taxonomy evolved and a definition of accountability was developed. The three categories of the taxonomy of accountability were intent, process, and outcome. Together they help clarify and promote understanding for accountability in nursing practice.